Not registered to vote in Pennsylvania? The clock is ticking if you want your voice to be heard in next month’s primary election.
Monday, April 16, is the deadline for Pennsylvanians to register to vote in the May 15 primary. If you haven’t taken the first step in completing your civic duty quite yet, there’s no shame. Here’s a quick procrastinator’s guide to get your ducks in a row by Monday.
How do I know if I’m registered to vote?
The Pennsylvania Department of State has a handy website available to see if you’re registered. All you need is your name or driver’s license or PennDot ID number. If choosing the former, in addition to your first and last name, you’ll also need to enter your county, zip code, and birth date.
If you are already a registered voter, the Department of State website will provide your affiliated party status and the address of your polling place.
How do I register to vote or update my voter information?
If you haven’t already registered, have had a change of address, or wish to switch parties, you’ll need to register or update your registration. Pennsylvania holds closed primary elections, meaning you’ll only be able to vote for candidates under your designated party.
Acting Pennsylvania Secretary of State Robert Torres notes that registering online is the “best method” — the form to register or make changes is available at pavoterservices.pa.gov.
Online not your thing? Pennsylvanians can also deliver a paper copy of the form to their county voter registration office or send it by postal mail — just make sure it’s postmarked by Monday.
Whom will I be voting for?
You’ll be casting a ballot for the primary nominees for U.S. senator, governor, lieutenant governor, representatives in Congress, state senators and other offices. Special elections are also being held in the 48th, 68th, and 178th Districts. (That means you, Bucks County.) Winning candidates in each party’s primary will then face off in the midterm elections, held Nov. 6.
There’s a lot riding on the general election, which could determine whether Congress will stay GOP-led or flip in Democrats’ favor.
Ballotpedia, a “nonpartisan online political encyclopedia,” has a sample ballot lookup so you can find more about candidates in your district.